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Dialogues of Galileo


Image from Galileo's DIALOGS

Galileo Galilei, Dialogo ... dove ne i congressi di quattro giornate si discoors sopra i due massini sistemi del mondo, Tolomaico, e Copernicano ... Florence: Giovanni Baptista Landini, 1632.

The first edition of Galileo's most celebrated and controversial work, his defense of the Copernican system and challenge to Aristotelian and classical orthodoxy, which resulted in Galileo's trial by the Inquisition and his forced abjurement of the Copernican 'heresy'. Written in the form of a discussion between three friends, the book is, as John Carter has pointed out, "a masterly polemic for the new science ... It revels in the simplicity of Copernican thought and, above all, it teaches that the movement of the earth makes sense in philosophy, that is, in physics"

The Libraries have acquired this copy of the Dialogues, a signature piece, to celebrate a bequest of $4.6 million from book collector and Washington University alumnus Phillip Mills Arnold.

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